Today’s Passage – Genesis 27 – 28
“And make me savoury meat, such as I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat; that my soul may bless thee before I die.” (Genesis 27:4)
This chapter of Genesis has always been a source of irritation to me. It is one of those passages where nothing is as it should be; and every character in the story is behaving badly. I will not rehearse the story as you can surely read it for yourself; but let’s examine the bad behavior of each character, and learn something from all of this.
First, let’s consider Rebekah. She is conspiring with her younger son against her husband. Right or wrong, her husband asked the older son, Esau, to go get him some dinner so that he could bless him. Rebekah did not want to see her favorite son, Jacob, lose the blessing, so she lies to her husband and works up an evil plan to deceive him. Wives, your husband may not always be right; but it is always right for you to submit to him unless of course he is telling you to do something against the clear command of God; and besides that, it is never right for you to lie or connive in order to get your way.
Now lets’s talk about Jacob. He was also clearly wrong. Although he did not want to do it initially, he was certainly complicit in the deception. He did what he knew to be wrong. He can not claim innocence because he was obeying his mother’s will. His mother was clearly doing wrong, and Jacob knew it; and he should have refused her.
In this story the one that seems to be the most innocent is Esau. However, we have already seen what makes Esau tick. You will remember that back in chapter 25, he sold his birthright for a bowl of chili (red pottage). Here, he claims that he was tricked out of his birthright, but he wasn’t. He gave it up willingly. Now he is trying to get back some of the blessing that comes with the birthright he already gave up.
Now we come to Isaac. At first glance it may appear that Isaac is completely a victim in this saga, but let’s carefully consider some things. First, notice how many times it states in this chapter that Isaac loves savoury meat. Now don’t misunderstand, I like savoury meat also. My wife just learned how to cook a bottom round roast with a high temperature recipe that really makes the meat tender and juicy. I love it. But when the Scripture emphasizes this point, it is telling us that Isaac’s appetite was the driving force of this whole story. I love my son, and I want to bless him; but my blessing him will not be dependent on whether or not he makes me dinner. Isaac in his birth is certainly a picture of Christ, but in his old age he seems to be a picture of the flesh.
Notice also in this story that Isaac is deceived because of his feelings. He felt the fake skin on Jacob’s hands and came to a faulty conclusion. How many times in our lives to we get messed up because we make decisions based on our feeling rather than on the clear will of God. If I only did right when I felt like it, I would rarely do it. We don’t come to church because we don’t “feel” good, or we don’t “feel” like it. Kid’s don’t go to school for the same reasons. We must do the will of God out of obedience to His word, not because of our feelings. It’s great when our feelings are in agreement with the Word, but when they don’t, we should follow God, not our feelings. Notice also that Isaac was dim of eyes. Now, I am not picking on his poor eyesight, but it is a picture of spiritual blindness. Isaac knew the will of God regarding his two sons. Jacob was God’s choice. Isaac didn’t particularly like the choice God made. Isaac preferred Esau because Esau fed Isaac’s flesh with savoury meat.
There is certainly a lot to “chew” on in this chapter isn’t there? Sorry I couldn’t resist.
Posted in Thoughts from Genesis by Phil Erickson with 4 comments.